Figure Skating
Skater Bios
 Friday, November 3
Slutskaya leads Kwan after short program
 Associated Press

MISSISSAUGA, Ontario -- Russia's Irina Slutskaya topped American Michelle Kwan in the women's short program in Skate Canada International on Friday night.

Michelle Kwan
Michelle Kwan of the United States finished second in Friday's short program.

"There's always room for improvement," said Slutskaya, second to Kwan in the world championships in April. "There's no limit on perfection. This is just the first meet of the season for me."

Slutskaya and Kwan are preparing for the world championships in March in Vancouver, British Columbia.

"There's a lot of things I can work on," Kwan said. "I'll be adding a lot of things to this program before the worlds."

Japan's Fumie Suguri was third, followed by Ukraine's Galina Maniachenko, Canada's Jennifer Robinson and American Deanna Stellato. The free skate is Saturday.

Canada's Jamie Sale and David Pelletier won the pairs title, outskating two-time world champions Elena Berezhnaya and Anton Sikharulidze of Russia. Sale and Pelletier also won Skate America last week in Colorado Springs, Colo.

World champions Maria Petrova and Alexei Tikhonov of Russia finished third.

In ice dance, world champions Marina Anissina and Gwendal Peizerat of France maintained their lead after the original dance. They will try to wrap up their seventh straight victory in a major event in the free skate Sunday.

Israel's Galit Chait and Sergei Sakhnovski were second, followed by Canada's Marie-France Dubreuil and Patrice Lauzon. Americans Beata Handra and Charles Sinek were seventh.

The meet is second of the six-event International Skating Union senior Grand Prix season.